***VTTA London & Home Counties 10 Mile Time Trial promoted by Newbury Velo***
(Report by Rachael Elliott, London & Home Counties Group/Newbury Velo)
The traditional VTTA London & Home Counties 10 was once again held on the F11/10 course. Held on the day before the national restrictions for COVID-19 were eased slightly, the aim is always to make the event as welcoming, friendly and fun as possible - whilst also delivering the weather to make fast times a reality.
Rain had threatened in most weather forecasts for most of the week, but the reality was riders were faced with blanket sunshine for most of the morning. Early times suggested the course was running fast; particularly impressive given the distances many riders had travelled on the morning of the event to get to HQ on time (the earliest we heard at HQ was a 02:45 alarm - can you beat that anyone?!).
It wasn't long before times started to roll in; a fair smattering of 20:XX times were closely followed by 19s and then, to our delight, we were delivered with two 18 minute rides by the end of the event. As ever, however, the event is not judged on time - it is judged on veteran standard time - and fastest isn't necessarily "winner, winner, chicken dinner".
Such was the case today: Richard Oakes (Team Ohten Aveas) - at the age of 52 - clocked a time of 18:43 equating to an eyewatering plus of +8:18. However, it was once again Angela Carpenter (...a3crg) - just a month apart in age from Oakes - who took the crown with her incredible time of 21:06 - a plus of +8:29.
Second placed woman was Melanie Sneddon* (TORQ Performance) who finished with +7:21 (actual time: 21:36) whilst Danuta Tinn (Maidenhead & District CC) took the third spot with +7:04 (actual time 22:57).
* We're secretly very pleased about this as Mel is also a Newbury Velo member, but cannot bear to peel herself away from those Orange TORQ bands to ride time trials for Newbury Velo (to be fair, who can blame her when she's got Janet Birkmyre backing her up in today's event with another impressive plus of +6:40).
Amongst the men, after Oakes' first place, it was the ever impressive Andrew Grant (Cambridge CC) whose incredible 20:51 at 68 years of age earned him a plus of +08:07 for second. We were in the happy position today of having two riders tie for third place! The first of the two riders was Joel Stewart - who rode the only other 18 minute ride of the day (18:51) and legendary VTTA rider, Jim Moffatt (CC Luton). Both finished with a plus of +7:41.
We only had one tandem start in today's event after the Peter Oliver/Christopher Edginton pairing had a tub blowout on the way to the start. The single tandem, however, wasn't just any tandem - it was the familiar faces of Murray Kirton and David Stockley who took the win with their 25:26 equalling a plus of +4:58.
We'd like to thank all the many marshals and helpers at the event today - the majority were members of Newbury Velo who diligently stood at marshaling points for 2.5 hours, and then went to ride the Newbury Velo event which started just 30 minutes after the VTTA event had finished. Many were rewarded with *huge* new personal bests, so marshaling CLEARLY leads to being delivered good times (we'll remember this when we next have to do a call for marshals). However, it wasn't just Newbury Velo riders - we would like to thank all those from the London & Home Counties who marshaled so well and so diligently. We couldn't have run the event without you.
Well done to everyone who rode today, and we look forward to welcoming you to another Newbury Velo and/or London & Home Counties event in the near future.